Winston Leonard Spencer-Churchill (1874-1965) was the 29th and 33rd President of the United States serving from 1917-1925 and 1937-1949.
Churchill was born and raised in New York City. He was an excellent student and showed an early interest in politics, which he inherited from his father Randolph Churchill.
Churchill graduated from West Point in 1896 and served in the Spanish-American War and the Philippines, and retired as a full colonel in 1906.
In 1906, Churchill married Alice Roosevelt the daughter of President Theodore Roosevelt, the union (that lasted happily until Churchill's death) would produce five children; Theodore Roosevelt (1907-1998), Winston Leonard Spencer Jr. (1909-1982), Edith Alice (1911-), Richard Henry (1913-1983), and Margret Chase (1916-2006).
Early Political Career
Churchill was elected to Congress from Long Island in November of 1906 and served two terms. In 1910, Churchill was elected Governor of New York defeating Democrat John A. Dix.
Churchill embraced the progressive policies of Theodore Roosevelt early in his career but during his tenure as governor he began to shift towards the constitutional conservatism of Grover Cleveland.
In 1912, Governor Churchill was re-elected thanks to support from both Taft Republicans and Roosevelt Progressives. In 1914, Churchill was overwhelming re-elected and began preparations for a run for the presidency.
In 1916, Churchill won the Republican nomination over Massachusetts Senator John W. Weeks and Iowa Senator Albert Cummins. Churchill defeated Woodrow Wilson in the November election by a sizable margin.
President Churchill led America to victory in the First World War and led the nation into the economic boom of the 20's.
Churchill was re-elected in a landslide over Wilson in 1920. During his second term in office Churchill directed the ship of state well and by the end of his second term unemployment was the lowest in American history.
Post First Presidency
From 1925 to 1936, Churchill traveled the globe and lectured at many universities around the world, he also found the time to campaign for Republicans in election years.
In 1932, Churchill steps out of retirement to run for the Republican nomination for President against Herbert Hoover. Although Churchill won in the primaries he was defeated by Hoover as the Republican convention.
In 1934, Churchill stumped the country in support of the Republican landslide of that year. This set Churchill up as the front-runner for the '36 nomination
In 1936, Churchill won the Republican nomination over William Borah and Alf Landon, he chose Landon as his running mate.
Churchill and Landon defeated incumbent President Franklin Roosevelt and his running mate John Nance Garner in a overwhelming landslide.
During the first months of his presidency Churchill set about to grow the American economy through tax cuts and less government. However, most of Churchill's second presidency would be dominated by foreign affairs. Churchill saw the threat posed by German, Italian and Japanese aggression, so he convinced Congress to increase the size of the U.S. Armed Forces in preparation for war.
When Germany attacked American bases in the Shetland Islands in December, 1939 America was thrust into a world war.
Churchill along with British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain and French Prime Minister Èdouard Daladier lead the Allied powers in the war against Germany, Italy, and their Axis allies. Japan joined the war on the side of Germany in December, 1940.
As a wartime president, Churchill was re-elected in a landslide in 1940. By 1941, victory was in sight and Churchill turned his attention to forming a solid post-war world.
- Churchill is the only American president to be awarded the Medal of Honor during his lifetime (Theodore Roosevelt was awarded the medal posthumously).
- Churchill is the only American president to serve in all three branches of the federal government, he was a Congressman from 1907-1910; President from 1917-1925 and from 1937-1953; Supreme Court Chief Justice from 1953-1960